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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Russia has no plans to supply arms to Libya - Russian envoy

RIA Novosti

16:35 17/07/2011

MOSCOW, July 17 (RIA Novosti) - Russia has no plans to supply arms to Libyan strongman Muammar Gaddafi, Russia's NATO envoy Dmitry Rogozin said in an interview with Ekho Moskvy radio station on Sunday.

"Both the Russian legislation and the legislation of the European Union states ban any supplies of arms to a territory hit by a civil conflict or a civil war," Rogozin said.

According to Rogozin, what some NATO states are doing in Libya is disgraceful and contradicts all the resolutions of the UN Security Council on the North African country.

"Namely, the air-dropping of arms to (Libyan) rebels by French helicopters is the subject of our very complex talks with them (NATO states)," Rogozin said.

The protests in Libya, one of the world's major oil suppliers, started on February 15 amid violent anti-government demonstrations across the Middle East. Mass protests were held against Gaddafi's 40-year rule which were later followed by an armed conflict between the government and rebel forces.

On March 17, the UN Security Council adopted a resolution stipulating a no-fly zone over Libya and the possibility of limited foreign military intervention. Britain, France, the United States, Canada, Belgium, Italy, Spain, Denmark, and Norway are involved in a coalition mission that began there on March 19.

On March 31, NATO took control of the Libyan operation. The stated aim of Operation Protector is to protect civilians and civilian-populated areas under attack or threat of attack. The mission consists of three elements: an arms embargo, a no-fly zone and actions to protect civilians from attack or the threat of attack.

The mandate of the operation expired on June 27, but NATO extended it for another 90 days, until late September, on July 1.

UN Security Council Resolution 1970, passed in February, prohibited states from providing any kind of arms to Libya. Resolution 1973, passed a month later, authorized countries "to take all necessary measures" to help protect Libyan civilians.

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